Driver Setup Off Toe

SD Charlie

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Well, this is the first post I've started here on THP. I hope it's a good one!

Quick backstory: Somehow recently, I developed a bad duck-hook with my driver. I couldn't figure it out for a while and then read a tip on keeping the hands together. It seems that I would let the trail hand slip, and my leading hand would shut the face dramatically in the downswing. That tip has helped things quite a bit, though I've lost some distance.

Fast-forward to yesterday at the practice tee, with me working on the driver (again). I noticed that I hit a couple severely off the heel of the club. After cursing myself and the club for a minute, I wised-up and grabbed my sharpie. As it turns out, I was consistently hitting the ball on the inner third of the club face. This is with the ball lined up on the sweetspot mark on the top of the driver at address. So, naturally, I start backing off, continuing to put a sharpie dot on the ball to track the contact off the club face. I finally got to where I was making contact off the sweet spot (and getting good results down the range). I like the fact that I'm getting good results again, but what concerns me is having to set up farther from the ball. I don't recall having to do this in the past. One thing to note, is that I'm still a pretty new golfer (about 1.5 years in), so my swing is still developing / evolving. (hopefully for the better) Anyway, long story short, should I be concerned, or should I work with this new alignment, and see how it develops? How do you guys set up to the ball when using your driver?

Thanks for reading! Cheers!
 

Hawk

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I line the ball out towards the toe and extend my arms out a little farther than normal. I used to have the same problems as (hitting on the heel or inside portion of the driver). If you address the ball with the club grounded, then line up the ball out towards the toe and then lift up the club (to the ball height), you should see that you are now lined up with the sweet spot. Does that make sense?
 

Hanks

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ball is lined up with my left armpit, right shoulder is below my left, arms hand naturally down, bend at the waist, slight knee bend/flex
 

interlooper

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Watch a down-the-line video of Zach Johnson as he sets up to the ball with the driver. You might just see something similar with respect to the setup (he moves closer to the ball during his swing and, thus, lines the ball up on the toe of the driver).
 

RxGus

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ball is lined up with my left armpit, right shoulder is below my left, arms hand naturally down, bend at the waist, slight knee bend/flex
Don't you have a really great illisturation of perfect driving form floating arounf this forum?
If I wasn't on my phone I would find it myself!
 

Young Money

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I had a similar hook problem and found that I was consistently hitting the ball on the heel of the club. Lining the ball up out on the toe helps me quite a bit.
 

Hanks

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that's so 2009.....come into the present Gus
Don't you have a really great illisturation of perfect driving form floating arounf this forum?
If I wasn't on my phone I would find it myself!
 

KellyBo

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I'm taking lessons and my coach had me line the ball up on the toe too. He explained it exactly like Hawk said in his post above that when you raise the driver off the ground it will be lined up to the sweet spot in the air. Another trick that he has me doing is placing the logo/label of the ball towards the inside at a 45* angle to the target line so that I hit the inside of the ball with my driver. I just aim at that target every time. He said he learned that from Davis Love III when he was at Sea Island and he has done it now for 20 years. These tips work wonders for your drive!
 

SD Charlie

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Hawk - totally makes sense, especially since my practice range has those rubber tees on their mats, which are usually taller than my normal setup. I should buy one and cut it down to my preferred height to use there..

KellyBo - Thanks for that tip, I think I've read that somewhere recently. Well, the plot thickens - my local practice range did complimentary swing videos yesterday and I just viewed mine. Granted, I wasn't fully warmed up yet, but ye gods - talk about over the top. Well, now that I think about it, maybe not so much over-the-top, more like I takeaway far below plane, and have to compensate in transition, which seems like it would definitely contribute to my pulls / hooks. I'm really intrigued by video analysis now. Hopefully I can take this one video and work on getting my driver swing back in tune. And hopefully it doesn't throw off my irons swing, which I'd say is pretty consistent and decent right now!
 

arydolphin

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At the end of this video (I can't get it to properly play at work), Ted Fort explains why he tees up the ball aligned with the toe of his driver. It's basically the reason that KellyBo listed in her post, but presented visually. I've started doing it after watching this video and noticed that I was hitting the center of the clubface more. The video is his audition for the Golf Channel Instructor Search, and the entire video is pretty good.
 

KellyBo

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Great video - that's exactly what I was told about setting up to the ball. It works! I've shared this tip with a couple of my friends who say it really helps them.


At the end of this video (I can't get it to properly play at work), Ted Fort explains why he tees up the ball aligned with the toe of his driver. It's basically the reason that KellyBo listed in her post, but presented visually. I've started doing it after watching this video and noticed that I was hitting the center of the clubface more. The video is his audition for the Golf Channel Instructor Search, and the entire video is pretty good.
 

rhinogolfer

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At the end of this video (I can't get it to properly play at work), Ted Fort explains why he tees up the ball aligned with the toe of his driver. It's basically the reason that KellyBo listed in her post, but presented visually. I've started doing it after watching this video and noticed that I was hitting the center of the clubface more. The video is his audition for the Golf Channel Instructor Search, and the entire video is pretty good.
Wow...that explains a lot. Now I can't wait to go hit the range, and get that ingrained into my set-up.
 

cg13

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i line up with the toe of the driver as you said here - not sure where i read that - but have done that for awhile. One new thing ive started doing this year - when i really need to muscle a long drive - or the swing feels good and i know i can pull it off - ill move the ball forward in my stance - almost past my left foot - and tee it up a bit higher - swing harder and hold the release - its a power move that will increase distance - if im not 100% warmed up - i dont attempt it - and if im not driving well i go to my "safe" position. Ball ahead of armpit slightly - choked down a little bit - and swing nice and easy.
 

BlueTitan

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At the end of this video (I can't get it to properly play at work), Ted Fort explains why he tees up the ball aligned with the toe of his driver. It's basically the reason that KellyBo listed in her post, but presented visually. I've started doing it after watching this video and noticed that I was hitting the center of the clubface more. The video is his audition for the Golf Channel Instructor Search, and the entire video is pretty good.
This does explain a few things. I'll have to try this out next time at the range. Thanks for posting it.
 

sacul1573

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I'm super embarrassed to admit that I didnt know this was the proper way to setup to the ball with a driver. To make matters worse, I'd set up with the ball slightly towards the heel of the club, which probably explains my consistant fade/slice with this club, despite draws with all my other clubs.

Anyway, I went to the range yesterday to try this out, and it's 100% legit. Almost every hit was a medium trajectory draw, with only a few straight pushes (my miss). I guess I'm no longer pulling the club in towards my body on the downswing in an effort to make solid contact (which would impart a fade spin on the ball, doh!). More consitancy, more distance!

What suprises me the most is that nobody has ever mentioned it to me. Not my wife's pro, not the pro I take occasional lessons through. Amazing!
 

KellyBo

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I know what you mean. I spent 20+ years hitting a fade until I made this change! No one ever mentioned it although I noticed some other players setting up like that. I've shared this tip with several of my friends and they were very pleased with the results.

I'm super embarrassed to admit that I didnt know this was the proper way to setup to the ball with a driver. To make matters worse, I'd set up with the ball slightly towards the heel of the club, which probably explains my consistant fade/slice with this club, despite draws with all my other clubs.

Anyway, I went to the range yesterday to try this out, and it's 100% legit. Almost every hit was a medium trajectory draw, with only a few straight pushes (my miss). I guess I'm no longer pulling the club in towards my body on the downswing in an effort to make solid contact (which would impart a fade spin on the ball, doh!). More consitancy, more distance!

What suprises me the most is that nobody has ever mentioned it to me. Not my wife's pro, not the pro I take occasional lessons through. Amazing!
 

Colt

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Thanks for the great info...now maybe I'll be able to start hitting off of my OWN fairway after I tee off now instead of the one to the right of me!!!
 

calebt17

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My normal setup is clubface in the middle of the ball on the ground. Today, I thought I would give this a try. I hit 11/14 fairways, my best percentage since July. I felt like I was getting better sweet spot contact. Thanks for the tip.
 

KellyBo

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Bumping this thread as I think it's a great tip for anyone suffering from a fade/slice off their driver. It's the one tip that helped me so much when I started taking lessons.
 

MrKyoo

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Thanks KB for the bump. It is such a small tip that may lead to a huge fix. I will test this out today.
 

War Eagle

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Bumping this thread as I think it's a great tip for anyone suffering from a fade/slice off their driver. It's the one tip that helped me so much when I started taking lessons.
Excellent, excellent tip! Thanks for the thread bump KB! Have been looking for some tips as I have been hitting a wicked slice lately. Will definitely try this one out tomorrow morning! Thanks!
 

War Eagle

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Want to give a big thanks to KB for bumping this thread up yesterday!

I went to the range this morning and made sure of where I was setting the driver up. Felt great, went straight.

Went out to play 18, hit 12/14 FIR, and shot my lowest round ever at a +6, 78! Makes it a lot easier when you can hit the driver in the fairway...
 

KellyBo

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Want to give a big thanks to KB for bumping this thread up yesterday!

I went to the range this morning and made sure of where I was setting the driver up. Felt great, went straight.

Went out to play 18, hit 12/14 FIR, and shot my lowest round ever at a +6, 78! Makes it a lot easier when you can hit the driver in the fairway...
That is awesome!!!! Such an easy fix. I'm so glad it helped.
 

JConn

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Great video and great tips. I am not fighting a slice but I am struggling to get consistent results with my driver. I have been setting up incorrectly this entire time. Will try this new setup this afternoon. Thank you.
 

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